Schools Outreach Event19th Mar 2013
With a very negative forecast in prospect, we were pleasantly surprised to arrive at Bidford on Avon Primary School under a blue sky with the quarter Moon riding high to the south. Approximately 40 parents and pupils came along bringing a selection of telescopes which ranged from the low range plastic models up to Skywatchers on equatorial mounts. With people struggling with their scopes up it was great that we were able demostrate the process of setting up, get the owners to do the same and watch them pick up and target the Moon with ease. Many common problems were evident: out of balance tubes, incorrect latitude settings, polar alignment, plastic eyepieces to name a few. Hopefully David H, Kevin W and myself have done something to help with the observing. The best comment from one parent (Skywatcher 130) was "Ive found out more in the last 15 minutes than I have all year" – job done! The illustrated talk about Comet Pannstars and the objects of the Orion constellation was well received with plenty of questions from the keen youngsters – the astronomers of the future. This event brought to a head our outreach work which began in November and once again illustrated the commitment of the CNAAG membership (other members were simultaneously representing the group at Oxford University) as well the overall appeal of astronomy.